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A Woodworker’s CNC Router.

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Project by SPalm posted 2477 days ago 24005 views 83 times favorited 43 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I have spent the last several years pursuing the build of a CNC router. It was a demanding experience, knowing absolutely nothing about the subject, either hardware or software. I now have it in a condition where I can use it, instead of designing and building it. It is completely designed and built by me. This is the third generation of the build and is really in a usable state. It can cut 3/4” hardwoods at a decent clip of around 2 inches a second and is basically rock solid. It is built mostly of Baltic Birch, has dual leadscrews for the long axis, and special V-bearings riding on the rails. A few months ago I added a tail vise so I could route with the work piece held vertically. So now I can route dovetails and fancy mortise and tenons etc. It can also do the more standard horizontal work of part profile cutting, sign making, rosette carving, and such.

It is fun to watch and I learned a lot. Now I need to get back to woodworking.

Edit: A two part blog on this build is here.

Here are some example cuts that I did while building it:

Dovetails
Celtic Tenon1
Celtic Tenon2
Wooden Clock Gears
House Sign
Rosette

And some projects:
Shell Box
Salt Box
Jewelry Box

A multi part blog including a vacuum clamp

Steve

-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon





43 comments so far

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 2916 days


#1 posted 2477 days ago

Yep..I’m impressed!!!!!

View Karson's profile

Karson

34858 posts in 3002 days


#2 posted 2477 days ago

Great job. Did you write the software or are you using a commercial product.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †

View David's profile

David

1970 posts in 2740 days


#3 posted 2477 days ago

Steve -

Unbelievable! I really like theHouse Sign and Celtic Tenon, but the delicate wooden clock gears . . . those are really impressive!

-- http://foldingrule.blogspot.com

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4435 posts in 2564 days


#4 posted 2477 days ago

Intrigueing. I’m impressed.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View Max's profile

Max

55956 posts in 2874 days


#5 posted 2477 days ago

Now that is a project. Very impressive indeed… Great job….

-- Max "Desperado", Salt Lake City, UT

View Jeff's profile

Jeff

1011 posts in 2695 days


#6 posted 2477 days ago

An amazing accomplishment! Any plans to blog your experience?

-- Jeff, St. Paul, MN

View cajunpen's profile

cajunpen

14363 posts in 2667 days


#7 posted 2477 days ago

WOW – you are the man!!!

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased." http://www.cajunpen.com/

View Dadoo's profile

Dadoo

1763 posts in 2592 days


#8 posted 2477 days ago

Absolutely outstanding!

-- Bob Vila would be so proud of you!

View OutPutter's profile

OutPutter

1194 posts in 2591 days


#9 posted 2477 days ago

Great job Steve. Tell us more. Do you have a program that makes dovetails or do you have to program each project? Does it take less time to program or do the project freehand that is, have you reached the breakeven point yet? Will you be blogging any of the details. Even without pictures, the story would be fascinating to a lot of people I’m sure. Maybe you could blog a small project using the CNC router….

-- Jim

View Sawdust2's profile

Sawdust2

1467 posts in 2689 days


#10 posted 2477 days ago

Awesome.

I don’t know if I’d want to make one myself but I’d sure like to know how you did it.

-- No piece is cut too short. It was meant for a smaller project.

View shaun's profile

shaun

360 posts in 2507 days


#11 posted 2477 days ago

Holy mackerel! That is absolutely unbelievable.

-- I've cut that board three times and it's still too short!

View shaun's profile

shaun

360 posts in 2507 days


#12 posted 2477 days ago

Hey Steve….. This is one that should get submitted to a magaizine.

-- I've cut that board three times and it's still too short!

View Moron's profile

Moron

4666 posts in 2495 days


#13 posted 2477 days ago

I tip my hat to you!............tonight I shall raise a glass to you!

There are many things in life that I would never attempt…...........thats one of them!

Regards

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View daltxguy's profile

daltxguy

1373 posts in 2515 days


#14 posted 2477 days ago

Brlliant. I want to build one too – to complete the “Sketchup to build list to cutting list to CNC router” vision.

I’m particularly impressed that you did it all yourself from scratch and that it is built of wood – well done and what a beauty!

Will you be sharing your plans in any way? I have software, hardware and woodworking experience – I’m ready to get started!

Beware the home CNC router woodworking tool – everyone will have one soon.

-- If you can't joint it, bead it!

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3808 posts in 2623 days


#15 posted 2477 days ago

Fantastic job!
I always wanted to try building one of those.
Where did you get your linear actuators and bridge hardware.

Bob

-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

showing 1 through 15 of 43 comments

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